Ghazal’s profound The Rain is nominated for the Best Traditional World Music Album award.
Profoundly oceanic, stunningly accomplished, subtle and moving, the new Ghazal live CD The Rain continues the duo’s groundbreaking fusion of the Indian and Persian musical traditions.
Kayhan Kalhor on the droning Persian bowed string instrument the kamancheh, and Shujaat Husain Khan, seventh generation master of the Imdad Khan school on sitar and beautifully integrated vocals, play improvisations on the traditional Persian and Indian repertoires before a live Swiss radio audience on this, their first recording for ECM. Joining the duo is Sandeep Das on tablas, adding a propulsive percussive element to Ghazal’s (formed in 1997) sonic range, especially on the CD’s final track, “Eternity,” which builds tidally to an epic climax before vanishing triumphantly into the ether.
With South Asian and Middle Eastern modalities no longer as alien to Western ears as they once were, perhaps this will be the smash hit it deserves to be.
Portions of this story originally appeared here.